NBA, Discovery Education give students mathematics-based virtual field trip

Friday May 5th, 2017

As part of a multi-year partnership, the NBA and Discovery Education are giving students a virtual field trip geared towards leveraging basketball to teach subjects around STEM but more specifically, mathematics.

On Thursday, both organizations will showcase “Careers That Count: A Virtual Field Trip with the NBA,” a STEM initiative hosted by Jr. NBA Ambassador and star of ABC’s Black-ish, Miles Brown.

At 1 p.m. ET, Brooklyn Nets forward Rondae Hollis-Jefferson along with NBA and team executives in analytics and data strategy will join a Twitter chat to discuss mathematics and its intersection with basketball. Additionally, through a 30-minute virtual experience, students will head inside NBA headquarters and Madison Square Garden followed by a trip to the Madison Square Boys & Girls Club in Brooklyn. There, Hollis-Jefferson will conduct a demonstration for how students can calculate points per shot and also explain how he utilizes math to make split-second decisions on the hardwood.

 “We want students to know that anyone with a passion for math and sports can pursue a career in professional athletics,” Kiki VanDeWeghe, NBA Executive Vice President of Basketball Operations, said in a statement. “Basketball and numbers go hand-in-hand, and we’re excited for students to see how we utilize math on an everyday basis to improve our game.”

Added Lori McFarling, Senior Vice-President, Discovery Education in a statement: “A solid foundation in math can set students on a path to pursue some of today’s most exciting careers. We’re proud to partner with the NBA to bring this dynamic event to classrooms nationwide in order to deepen understanding of how young people can apply what they are learning in the classroom to their lives beyond graduation.”

Through the partnership, math problems from NBA and WNBA footage and statistics such as points, rebounds, assists and others were also included in Discovery Education’s Math Techbook last fall to ultimately teach students the same basic principles but via a different vehicle.

Besides Hollis-Jefferson and VanDeWeghe, participating in the STEM educational initiative are Doris Daif, NBA Senior Vice President of Customer Data Strategy, Hao Meng, NB Director of Basketball Strategy, and Zain Jafri, Database Analyst, New York Knicks.

SI Apps
We've Got Apps Too
Get expert analysis, unrivaled access, and the award-winning storytelling only SI can provide—from Peter King, Tom Verducci, Lee Jenkins, Andy Staples, Grant Wahl, and more—delivered straight to you, along with up-to-the-minute news and live scores.